The diagnostic trajectory of Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) in the Netherlands: Experiences of mothers

Jessica M Lust*, Imke L J Adams, Heleen A Reinders-Messelink, Joli Luijckx, Marina M Schoemaker, Bert Steenbergen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Background: Receiving a diagnosis can have a major impact on the child and its family. Parental satisfaction concerning the diagnostic trajectory is important with regard to acceptance and coping with their child's problems. Our aim was to describe the diagnostic trajectory of developmental coordination disorder (DCD) in the Netherlands and identify factors that are related to parents' satisfaction. Method: Mothers of 60 children with a DCD diagnosis completed an online survey concerning their experiences during and after the diagnostic trajectory of obtaining this diagnosis. Results: Forty percent of the mothers rated the diagnostic trajectory towards a DCD diagnosis as stressful and 47% rated the knowledgeability of the first professional they consulted (mostly a general practitioner, paediatric physical therapist, or youth health care physician) as having no or just superficial knowledge about DCD. Around 60% of the mothers described a lack of knowledge and support at their child's school after receiving the diagnosis. Notwithstanding this, the majority of the participating mothers was (very) satisfied with the diagnostic trajectory. Higher appreciation of both the manner of the diagnosing professional and the post-diagnostic support provided were predictive of higher satisfaction. Conclusions: Our results underline the importance of improving the knowledgeability in primary schools and primary health care professionals with regard to DCD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139-149
Number of pages11
JournalChild: Care, Health and Development
Issue number1
Early online date16-Sep-2021
Publication statusPublished - Jan-2022

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